What is a Dystopian Novel?

Happy Monday, Fancy Oatmeal readers!  It’s the start of a new week, and despite sleeping horribly last night, I am ready to dive right back into the normal routine.

This morning’s run was a little different because I began a new book: Delirium by Lauren Oliver.  

It’s another Dystopian novel; I feel at home again after finishing the third book in the “Hush, Hush” series by Becca Fitzgerald (review to come on “What I’m Reading” Thursday)  It occurred to me that I have been sharing my love of Dystopian Young Adult Literature,

but have never really explained what it is.  According to ReadWriteThink.org:

Dystopias: Definition and Characteristics

Utopia: A place, state, or condition that is ideally perfect in respect of politics, laws, customs, and conditions.

Dystopia: A futuristic, imagined universe in which oppressive societal control and the illusion of a perfect society are maintained through corporate, bureaucratic, technological, moral, or totalitarian control. Dystopias, through an exaggerated worst-case scenario, make a criticism about a current trend, societal norm, or political system.

Characteristics of a Dystopian Society

  • Propaganda is used to control the citizens of society.
  • Information, independent thought, and freedom are restricted.
  • A figurehead or concept is worshipped by the citizens of the society.
  • Citizens are perceived to be under constant surveillance.
  • Citizens have a fear of the outside world.
  • Citizens live in a dehumanized state.
  • The natural world is banished and distrusted.
  • Citizens conform to uniform expectations. Individuality and dissent are bad.
  • The society is an illusion of a perfect utopian world.

If this sounds like the type of novel you’d be interested in, here is a GREAT resource for classic Dystopian novels, or HERE for Young Adult Dystopian novels.

Now that I have done my Literary duty for the day, I wish you the best!

5 thoughts on “What is a Dystopian Novel?

  1. Hahaha @ your literary duty. I HAVE wondered about the definition, but never took the time to look it up. I’m glad you put it right in my lap. Thanks. It’s exactly what I thought. I’m so smart. Hehehe.
    Have you read The Hunger Games trilogy yet? Sooo good! I’m NOT into YA or anything like that, but I reeeally like it, and I’m super excited about the movie coming out in March.

  2. Pingback: Five Things Friday | Fancy Oatmeal

  3. Pingback: Lauren Oliver’s Delirium Series Review | Forever Within the Numbered Pages

  4. Pingback: Awaken Book Review | Forever Within the Numbered Pages

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